Wednesday, April 4, 2012

CCDD 040512—Against All Odds

Cool Card Design of the Day
4/5/2012 - What would it take to make Valor Made Real Limited playable? I'd say Against All Odds is about the minimum to convince decent players to run this, probably as their 23rd card.

Take a look.

The dream is to massacre your opponent's army of 1/1 tokens. The more likely use is as a sideways Giant Growth that lets your 2/2 trade with that imposing 4/4 attacker while Fogging his two little buddies. The good news is, it's no longer terrible.

The bad news is, it's still not remotely exciting. Not every card can be exciting, of course, but I have trouble imagining the set that just has to have
this trick. More exciting, at least for Timmy, would be stapling Righteousness onto Valor Made Real for a less conditional defensive blowout. It's less impressive against a real army of tokens, but better in most normal circumstances. That card might have to be rare, like Righteousness was until Magic 2010. Is it worth a rare slot? I guess if Overrun can be uncommon, so could this, you'd just have to cost it 2WW or so.


  1. Fight From Death's Door - 2WW
    Target creature can block any number of creatures this turn. When that creature dies, iteals damage equal to its power to each creature it blocked this turn.

  2. Though I never play Valor Made Real in RGD limited, nor did I care to pick up Palace Guards in M11, I do enjoy these effects greatly.

    Recently made use of a surprise Ironfist Crusher in Onslaught limited to time out my opponent on his Alpha Strike — what's not to love about that?

  3. I believe there are other things you could do:
    add it as an ETB to a flash creature
    add a regeneration shield
    add an untap
    add a clause if it blocks 3 or more creatures (like undestructable until eot)

    1. Sure, there are a lot of things to do here. I like the untap ability, and I think it'd be pretty neat to have a creature like

      Unexpected Obstacle 3W
      Creature- Wall (U)
      Defender, Flash
      Unexpected Obstacle can block any number of creatures.

      In terms of your card, I'd go for a fixed +X/+X value. That means that the card isn't just useful as a defense against a swarm, but also ambushes individuals.

      It's kind of funny to think that Righteousness was a Rare in 10th, but Smite was a common in stronghold. Honestly, Righteousness is SUCH a fun, splashy, simple card that I wouldn't be surprised to see it reprinted as a core set common eventually. Stapling it to this is a bigger blowout, but like most cards of this ilk it's a hard card to bluff if it costs enough:

      Against All Odds 4WW
      Instant (U)
      Cast Against All Odd only during an opponents turn.
      Target you creature gains +6/+6 and may block any number of creatures this turn.

    2. Righteousness at common would be shocking. Close to the reprinting of Lightning Bolt, but perhaps a touch more just because it would make attacking a white player suicide every time and that mindset would hurt play all around.

    3. Building on Duncan's position comparing Righteousness and Smite, there are actually more ways to play around Righteousness than Smite, as you can counter it, kill the target, tap the target, diminish its power, or remove it from combat.

      Smite removes the middle three responses, leaving you with two options of either countering Smite, or removing your own creature from combat.

      So, no, I don't think printing Righteousness at common would be remotely as "shocking" as Lightning Bolt.

    4. Huh. Interesting. Righteousness is great on a lifelink creature, but otherwise worse than Smite. Apart from costing 2 less, they're both worse than Rebuke. So in terms of power level, Righteousness could clearly be common. I'm not convinced it's common in any other way (except simplicity), though.

    5. Honestly, I think they avoided printing it at Common for M10 because they've been conscientiously moving away from deceptive cards at low rarity. By which I mean Commons that are bad (Favor of the Woods) are explicitly bad, whereas something like Righteousness looks impressive to the casual eye, but is actually much worse than comparable spells outside of very specific circumstances.

    6. Exactly. That and +7/+7 just doesn't feel common, certainly not for white.

  4. Smite at common wasn't shocking in Rise. Is righteousness all that different?